Monday, December 10, 2012
The Greatest Threat to One Law (Hint: It's Not the UMJC or FFOZ)
This past Friday I went to Grove Ave Baptist Church's Hannukah party. It was great. The teaching was excellent. One of the pastors explained why Christians should celebrate Hannukah. Oh, and he was wearing a kippah!
There was a small delegation there from a local UMJC synagogue. And, yeah, they gave me the cold shoulder. I even said "hi" to one fellow in the hall and he just glanced at me warily and kept walking. Perhaps he didn't hear me?
But I was thinking about something. Where will all of this go? I overheard the pastor tell someone that they wouldn't have been allowed to do this five years ago.
These wonderful Christians have apparently been encountering a tough adversary: their own denomination!
It's funny: the UMJC people there absolutely hate me (we have a history). But the reality is that we're on the same team: team Judaism. We both only wish to show the beauty and goodness of G-d's Torah.
The UMJC and others like them are their own worst enemy. They make the gentiles feel excluded and so most of the gentiles (notice i said most) end up leaving dissatisfied after a while. But the Christians are inclusionists with regard to their religion. The Christian says triumphantly that all men should follow Christianity (even Jews). So the Christian includes everyone and makes everyone feel welcome.
This is problematic. Messianics shouldn't get too cozy at church---even the ones who are awakening to Jewish Roots. Why? Because that old threat is still there: anti-Judaism.
I don't even know if Grove Ave. will continue doing what it is doing. I pray that they will continue on this trajectory! But will they? We don't have a lot of historical data here. This pro-Judaism thing (e.g. pastors wearing kippot, teaching Christians to follow Hannukah because Christ followed it)...this is a new trend.
Well, here's hoping that these Christians at Grove Ave. will continue on their journey and will not suffer reprisals from within their movement.
Posted by Peter at 8:04 AM